“How do I get on Oprah?” – The Question Every Book Publicist & Marketing Guru Hates to Hear.


"How do I get on Oprah?"

If I was asked once, I was asked a thousand times.  Every author wants to know the secret for getting on Oprah.  Traditionally published, self-published, unpublished – It doesn’t matter.  Too many authors think they have a book that is perfect for Oprah’s show or worse yet, they think they have a book Oprah will love.

I get it.  It’s Oprah.  She moves books.  But if you think getting a publishing deal is tough, try getting on Oprah to promote your book.  I’ve talked to probably over a thousand authors over the last five years, and I can think of maybe three occasions where I thought to myself, “This book is perfect for Oprah.”

Nonetheless, I’ve been asked the question so I often I researched the matter and came up with a strategy that may increase your chances of getting on Oprah.   There is no sure fire way of getting on Oprah to promote your book unless you’re Stedman or Gayle King… In fact, I don’t even think Stedman is guaranteed a spot on Oprah to sell his book.  But you can do a few things to better you odds.

  • Join Oprah’s community on her website and be an active member on her message boards.  Be relevant.  Be helpful.  Be professional.  The more you participate the more opportunities you have of being noticed by the right person on Oprah’s staff.
  • Monitor the website for upcoming shows.  You may get lucky and discover they will be doing a show on the topic of your book.  And it’s possible they may even need guests.
  • Submit articles and Op/Ed pieces to local area media outlets in Chicago.  Make a name for yourself in Oprah’s hometown.
  • Create personal videos of you talking about your book.  Showcase your on-camera abilities.
  • Don’t forget about the other TV shows.  The more media experience you have the better.  Click here to find a blog post I wrote about those other TV shows.

That’s it.  It’s not rocket science, and I can’t promise you any of this stuff will work. I’ll leave you with two pieces of advice.

Don’t pay anyone who says they can get you on Oprah.  They can’t.  It’s a scam.

Don’t send Oprah a copy of your book.  It will end up on a pile of unread books she receives daily.

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2 thoughts on ““How do I get on Oprah?” – The Question Every Book Publicist & Marketing Guru Hates to Hear.

  1. Great tips! But nothing will stop me from getting Oprah Winfrey to give away some of my books on her show. You see, for the first time in my online endeavor I can print and distribute my books, all by myself–You can’t imagine how hard I’ve struggled to get here–and there’s nothing to stop me from getting O. W. to hand out a bunch of them to her audience, on her show.
    I’m aware that there are thousands of authors out there, and they all want to get on her show, all their books are the best for Oprah, and so forth. She gets piles and piles of books every day, but a few them do get chosen, maybe for her club or like my case to give away on the show, so I don’t agree that one should not send her books. You’ll never know if….
    My books are professionally published. See for yourself on the Kindle Store at Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Ddigital-text&field-keywords=wade+hilton&x=0&y=0 And I’m sure, determined, I’ll find a way to have her give away some of mine.

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